(PIX11)–Mr. G met a woman who wears many hats: daughter, sister, wife, mother to three beautiful children and also survivor.
“Katie was always a very positive person.” That’s how John McCabe described his daughter Katie Rich.
“She was very athletic, She played volleyball all through college,” McCabe said.
“I felt pain in my ribcage and I kind of brushed it off,” Katie Rich remembered. “Weeks went by and I finally got into the doctor and I went through a slew of tests.”
On October 4, 2012, two and a half months after giving birth to her third child, she was diagnosed with stage four colon cancer.
“I was given a 6% chance to make it,” Katie said. “I was just so scared. I just pictured my kids growing up without a mother, and my husband being a widow.”
“She would never give up.” Will Rich, Katie’s husband said. “She knew that we had three children and she had to be there for them.”
Katie went through eight rounds of intense chemotherapy and then had a major surgery. It’s one of the largest surgeries performed at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
“They removed 70% of my liver, 30% of my colon, and they put in a hepatic pump for my liver.”
“For the children, you know, you got to put a smile on your face,” Katherine McCabe, Katie’s mother said. “[You have to] say every day it’s better, and it is getting better.”
Two months post-surgery, Katie started feel like herself again; a feeling she never wants to lose again. And she’s showing her progress by competing in her second Colon Cancer Challenge.
“We have about 60 people here on Team Eratikatie,” Katie said.
It’s not just about the race though, for Katie it’s about raising awareness and helping others get the chance to even compete. So her team is raising money for those fighting colon cancer.
“My team has collected a little over $20,000,” Katie added.
But, Katie is still fighting. There is a 60 percent chance her cancer will return in her liver.
“It’s really scary, really, really scary,” Katie said. “Right now we kind of live scan to scan.”
But. that’s not stopping the Rich family from living life.
“We love to be outside, we love to go to the beach,” Katie explained. “We recently just bought a house, so we’re building that together now.”
“Her resolve, her passion, her strength and her drive, it’s just unbelievable,” Will described.
Katie was a fighter, is a fighter and will always be a fighter; for her friends, her parents, her husband and for herself, but most important for Madeline, Quint and Brady.
PRODUCED BY: KIM PESTALOZZI